Brennan: CIA Made Strange Move on Trump's Orders

Former CIA director says he learned Trump forbid him from getting access to documents
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 29, 2020 9:20 AM CDT
Brennan on Memoir: Trump Put Huge Roadblock in My Way
In this May 23, 2017, file photo, former CIA Director John Brennan testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, before the House Intelligence Committee Russia Investigation Task Force.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

Former CIA director John Brennan says President Trump stonewalled Brennan's attempts to access his own notes and the classified documents he signed off on during his time with the agency. The Washington Post reports that in the fall of 2018 Brennan sought the documents as material for the memoir he was working on—one that is due to be published Oct. 6 and has been reviewed in part by the paper. When the CIA refused him—a highly atypical move for an agency that traditionally lets former directors review such documentation when writing their memoirs—Brennan went back and forth with the agency over the decision. Brennan writes he ultimately learned that in August 2018 the president “had issued a directive . . . that purportedly forbids anyone in the intelligence community from sharing classified information with me.”

A White House rep confirmed the move, saying it was within Trump's constitutional authority and that he restricted Brennan's access to classified information "in view of Mr. Brennan’s erratic behavior and the President’s belief that access to classified information should be solely for the benefit of the government and the American people." The Post has more here on the memoir, titled Undaunted: My Fight Against America’s Enemies, at Home and Abroad, including Brennan's recollection of his first meeting with Trump. (Read more about Brennan and Trump's contentious relationship here.)

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